In spite of loss, the Minnesota Twins flashed the leather against the Indians

SAN DIEGO, CA - AUGUST 2: Miguel Sano
SAN DIEGO, CA - AUGUST 2: Miguel Sano /

The Minnesota Twins dropped the opening game of a three-game set with the Indians on Tuesday, but they still made highlight plays

While the Minnesota Twins would have preferred to record a victory in the series opener against the Cleveland Indians to get closer to the American League Central lead, they did see two of their young stars make exceptional defensive plays.

Byron Buxton‘s leaping grab

Minnesota Twins fans seeing Byron Buxton in a defensive highlight is probably getting to the point of so common place that it’s lost its effect. However, Buxton is not just recording a great defensive season for the Twins, he’s recording a season that’s leading all center fielders in baseball in defensive runs saved in just 98 games played, a pace for 30 defensive runs saved in a full season.

Here’s the home run-stealing catch from Tuesday evening:

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Miguel Sano

Sano isn’t exactly known for his defensive prowess. In fact, one of the biggest concerns for Sano in 2017 was how he would handle third base defensively. The team was certain his bat would play, and they were willing to take what they assumed to be a hit defensively in order to have Sano play third, knowing his bat would provide more value than his glove would take away.

Sano impressed by working extremely hard at defense, allowing him to be extremely sure-handed. While his range will never have him making anyone forget Brooks Robinson, Sano has been able to handle chances that have come his way quite well. His .970 fielding percentage has him rated 10th in the league, showing just how sure-handed he’s been on the plays he gets to.

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While these sorts of highlight plays aren’t likely going to be the norm for Sano, it’s nice to not just see him make the play, but also to see the reaction that he got from his teammates in the dugout afterward and the reaction on Twitter afterward from beat writers and fans alike, praising his play.